11 October 2012

life in october

(So... I never had the guts to post my third pondering topic last month.  I'll save it in the draft folder in case I find that nudge someday.)

Autumn has begun.  It's fresh air, crunchy leaves and my wedding anniversary (15 years!) mark the beginning of my favorite season. This is the time of year I love to go outside and lay on the ground and just feel the earth beneath me, soaking in the loveliness around me.  It's the easiest time for me to be still and know God, even for just the moment at hand. Just to feel His presence in the midst of the chaos that surrounds me.

It also marks the beginning of Little B's seasonal struggles.  It seems he has different issues all year long, and they cycle consistently. This is when the days begin to get shorter, and his frustrations mount higher. Resistance to everything becomes his norm and my ability to cope falls through the floor. Arguing begins with rising and ends when his melatonin finally kicks in around 9pm. Or he swings from helium-like-high to the darkest shades of blue in the blink of an eye.

This drains the entire family and asking him to complete his homeschool day is practically impossible.  It spreads to Miss C who would then rather draw on her papers than write. It oozes over to the little ones who would rather be in another room and grow cranky from the grumps that pour over the house as the day drags on.

I am challenged to find new and creative ways to help my kids learn.  Every year I try to go farther "out of the box" and still help them grow and learn. I've spent weeks talking to the Lord about it and gradually I'm finding little ways to make changes. Since Little B does more with a routine and is the master of avoidance, it's truly a balancing act to get the things that need doing done and blend them with the easy things.

Anyone with creative learning ideas, do share!  I'll try to post on how it's going once in a while.  For now, I'm finding subjects (read: "electives") to enrich the enjoyment of learning without requiring lots of table time unless they want to....

So far, my list of ideas include:

Science Experiments (not per curriculum - just whatever strikes their fancy)
Languages (Little B listens while playing Legos, Miss C wants to learn...)
Music Appreciation (um...we'll see)
Reading (easy for Little B, less so for Miss C)
Cooking (anything and everything)
Walks, yoga, outdoors, skating, etc.
Nature Study (again, we'll see...though Miss C adores animals and bugs more than anything)
Art (again, Miss C's forte...though they all enjoy it)
Time Line of World History, fill it in as you read something (this stirred Little B's excitement!  LOL!)
Netflix documentaries
Educational apps on my iphone (need to find some GOOD ones!)

I'll give them a small chunk of time for the math and writing/phonics each day, and chores are a must.  But I want their heart not an all day argument....if they grow up to be bitter with a stellar degree, it would mean far less than if they love the Lord (and hopefully me) and are happy and have a job and life they're content with, whatever it is.